Gulfer wary of tough August for Barkingside

PUBLISHED: 17:00 17 July 2015

Barkingside are preparing for their third season in the Ryman North

Barkingside are preparing for their third season in the Ryman North


Side boss believes fixture list has been tough on team

New Barkingside boss Gursel Gulfer believes his team face a difficult start to the season after the fixtures for the Ryman North were released.

Gulfer took over from Matt Frew, who resigned at the end of last season, and takes Side to Thurrock’s Ship Lane on the opening day of the season on August 8.

The new manager in the Barkingside dugout says he believes the Fleet will be challenging for promotion at the end of the season but feels his team can push them hard in their first match of the campaign.

“The first five games for us will be very tough but pre-season is going well at the minute,” said Gulfer.

“Thurrock are probably among the favourites for the league title this year so it will be tough to go there on the first day.

“But we’re not going to go there thinking that. We’re going to go there believing we can get a result.”

Side are scheduled to play league new boys Phoenix Sports, which will be the first match at Cricklefields on August 10, and Haringey Borough away on August 31.

And Gulfer is happy to face them inside the opening month knowing they will have still be adapting to competing at a higer level, adding: “They both won their respective league last year but I think they’ll find it tough.

“I would rather play them early as they are in their first season in the league and we are in our third. They’ll still be getting used to it.”

As for derbies, Barkingside face travels to Hornchurch on September 19, Redbridge on November 29 and Romford on January 2.

It means home ties against all three in the second half of the season, with the Urchins visiting on January 9, Boro on March 28 and the Motormen on April 9 and Gulfer is looking forward to them.

“All those games will be tough for both teams. Local derbies are never easy and both sides will be looking to make it tough for one another.”

Barkingside’s season ends at home to Dereham town and Gulfer is hoping the team’s future will be decided by that point.

“I hope it doesn’t go that far! I was never relegated as a player and I know it’s a long season but hopefully we’ll be safe pretty early.

“The aim is mid-table, we have to be realistic. The top 12 in this league will be pushing for promotion and the others will be in a kind of mini-league.

“Let’s just hope we finish at the top of that mini-league come the end of the season.”

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